Switch Your Thinking

Are you getting the most from your solar panels?

Whether you have solar panels already or are considering installing them, here are our top five tips for making the most of the sun’s energy.
  1. Save electricity wherever you can. Energy efficiency remains crucial. Ideally, you will implement energy efficiency measures before installing your solar panels – this will make it more likely that you choose a system that meets your needs.
  2. Get to know your appliances. If you have a solid understanding of what is using electricity in your home and when, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to shift your use to make the most of the daylight hours.
  3. Choose the right size system for your needs
    • Your panels are only producing electricity if the sun is shining. Estimate the percentage of your total household electricity use that occurs during the day. 
    • Unless you are on a generous feed-in tariff of 20 or 40 cents per kilowatt hour, there is no incentive for you to produce more electricity than you need. It may be better to get a smaller system and then work on your energy efficiency measures than to get a bigger system and over-produce.
  4. Use electricity while the sun is shining. Examples of electricity use that could be shifted to the day time include charging phones, toothbrushes and other small appliances, pool, pond and spa pumps, washing machines and dishwashers.
  5. Monitor your system’s output so you know when your solar panels are the most productive. This will depend on factors such as the time of year, your location, the direction your panels are facing and any shading from buildings and trees. Once you know when your panels are producing at their peak, you’ll know when you put the pool pump on!
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Switch your thinking has partnered with a local supplier to offer discounts on solar panel installation to residents of Switch your thinking Council areas.

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World Wetlands Day at Mary Carroll Park

Tuesday 2 February
Mary Carroll Park, Gosnells

Celebrate the wonderful work that was achieved in 2015. Catch up on latest about vision plan, cockatoo watch, adopt a spot and marri growing. 

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The house that Chris built

Thursday 4 February
Murray Library, Pinjarra

Presented by Chris Ferreria – sustainability advocate and adjunct lecturer from the Forever Project. 

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Living Smart - Victoria Park

Thursday 18 February - 
Thursday 31 March
6:30 PM—9:00 PM
Town of Victoria Park 
Council administration building

Want to meet like-minded people in your community and be more connected? Learn new skills? Lighten your impact on the environment? All of these topics, plus many more, are covered in this seven week course which focuses on positive change and practical action! 

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Decluttering: All you need is less

Wednesday 3 February
3:00 PM—4:00 PM
Armadale Library, Armadale

A reminder to re-use, re-purpose, upcycle, recycle or throw out stuff you don’t need. 

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Bold Park walks by sunset

Tuesday 16 February
Monday 29 February
Bold Park, Floreat

These popular walks run by the Friends of Bold Park Volunteer Guides are free to attend and are held twice a month from January through March. 

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Bike maintenance

Thursday 23 February
Palmerston Street, Perth

Turn up at one of these great free sessions! The Bike Dr will give your bike a quick check over, fix any easy problems or diagnose any bigger issues so as you can ride on in confidence. 

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